Dear Tummy;

A letter for a difficult relationship.

I wish we had a better relationship. I have been trying since I was a teenager to feel better about you but our negative relationship still haunts me every single day. I have tried everything to hide you. Extreme corsets, tummy-slimming undies, control top pantyhose, baggy shirts, those horribly uncomfortable tummy-tucking Lycra shorts thingies that just end up rolling down and creating a weird lump under my clothing... you name it, I've tried it. And still, there you are like a creepy stalker following me everywhere I go.

I've even tried to make you go away with diet pills, starvation and exercise until I nearly passed out. You, however, refuse to leave. You have even decided to make yourself more prominent as I get older as I've been busily trying to hide you from everyone I meet. For some reason, I don't want anyone to know you are there but it is not like I can really hide you. As soon as my clothes come off and I remove whatever I was wearing to strap you down, well... there you are. As proud, defiant and stubborn as ever. Unlike most of my boyfriends, you just refuse to leave me.

I frequently stand in front of the mirror and curse you. I change outfits over and over again trying to find something that hides you at least a little bit. I curse whoever designs woman's shirts to be too short or too tight and wonder why I bought all these fucking tops that can only be worn if I wear a corset to strap you down. What was I thinking?

It's hard not to hate you because society seems to hate you so very much. I have such a hard time finding clothing designed to fit you right, so the fashion industry must hate you. Every TV, movie, or music star (except for a precious few) do not seem to have their own version of you so obviously, the entertainment industry hates you. I spent my whole childhood being mercilessly teased about you; I've had horrible comments said behind my back (or even to my face) about you; I've been told over and over again that I would look much better without you... so I can only conclude society hates you, too.

I am really trying to repair our relationship, dear Tummy. I do not want to be constantly thinking about you, or actually more like obsessing about you. I think we would have a better relationship if I didn't. You are there. You are a part of my body. With my body type, you are never going to go away. I shouldn't feel so negatively about you. Every day I say to myself as I get dressed, "Well, there you are Tummy. You are not hiding as well as I would like you to. Well, fuck it! I have you. And you have me. If the rest of world doesn't like you, they can go to hell..."

So, dear Tummy, let's try to get along. Help me to stop thinking about how everyone else must view and dislike you. I should like you. We should be friends. There are just so many more important things in the world to be worrying about than you. In the immortal words of a friend of mine, "Fuck 'em if they can't take a joke..."

Sarah Sparks
Sarah Sparks

Witchcraft poet, neurotic sex symbol, over-educated sadist, and generally only dangerous to herself and a few unfortunate bedmates. Found haunting the halls of academia, frequenting shady establishments and eating candy at home in bed.

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Dear Tummy;